**I'm curious if anyone might offer some technical details and other observations?**Specifically, explaining the flaws in one Bob Armstrong's attacks on science and fundamental physics understanding.

**You see, I like to believe that a good deal of my audience consists of informed students and some actual scientists - it's time for me to put it to a test.**You who do possess the knowledge to see through Bob's game, can you help teach me how to explain it?Back to the issue at hand: Bob Armstrong's supposed rewriting of "settled physics" and his contempt for the "consensus" understanding. I'll admit I take a different approach. While I tend to be skeptical of all I hear -at least until mounting evidence turns a claim into something more substantial- I admit it's been good enough for me to know many thousands of experts have been refining this understanding for centuries and decades.

Bob, on the other hand has convinced himself all those accomplished experts are too stupid to grasp the basics. Since I've been spending time looking into Bob's spiel and all the bizarre dead-ends they lead me into, I've been wanting to know a bit more about it.

**Thus, I'm sending out this plea into the ether for someone(s) who are fluent in these matters to spend a few minutes explaining their understanding and observations regarding the various deceptions Bob Armstrong has been projecting.**

Simple straight-forward response would be welcome. Clarity is the object.

**I have listed five specifics followed by own understanding and questions, followed by Bob's quotes in their complete context.**

**_______________________________________________**_

**Armstrong:**"

**the deep relationship between equilibrium temperatures and gravity"**

Seems to me this gravity effect Bob refers to is more about pressure and the weight of the column of air, than gravity per se. Can anyone explain the distinction these simple concepts/terms?

What deep relationship? Explain.What's it got to do with the changes brought about by increasing GHG levels?

The only obvious one is the change in temperature of a gas with adiabatic expansion or compression. This then leads to a Lapse Rate - the rate at which atmospheric temperature decreases with an increase in altitude (see Lapse Rate in Wikipedia).

In reality, due to the inhomogeneity of the atmosphere and interactions with radiation the Lapse Rate is just an idealised figure (see Atmospheric temperature in Wikipedia). There is certainly no simple application when comparing different planets.

As to greenhouse gases, they actually interfere with the idealised calculations of lapse rates as they assume some sort of even warming, and do not calculate radiative heat transfers. In short increases in CO2 result in increased warmth in the troposphere with cooling in the stratosphere and above.Dave Smith

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

**Armstrong:**"

**But I see no evidence that the journeyman "climate scientist" has anywhere near that background in "thermostatics"."**

**"...**Thermostatics does not attempt to describe how exchanges take place, but only what is exchanged.

Even though time is not an explicit variable in thermostatics, we are interested in situations where the system goes through a succession of different equilibrium states. This is referred to as a “thermodynamical process”. A process is quasistatic if the transformation is so slow as to always leave the state in equilibrium."

They most certainly do, this sort of physics is the simple basics of what they need to understand. Bob seems to be making some bizarre claim of a greater understanding of climate physics than climate physicists.

From this he also appears to be hinting at the impossibility of radiative forcing changing the temperature by assuming that simplistic idealised physics are the be all and end all of reality.

Climate models use complex calculations of radiative heat transfer, vertical mixing and inhomogeneities, and cloud and aerosol formation.

Thermostatics is the study of systems in thermal equilibrium. Lapse rates are an example of that.Dave Smith

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

**Armstrong: "notion of orthogonal function decomposition"**

**"**Principal component analysis", whose Wiki page I also read.

What I got out of all of it was that it has more to do with statistical processing technics, here again, it doesn't seem to me to directly help with understanding the fundamentals of what increasing our atmosphere's CO2 concentration Earth's heat holding capacity.

Am I correct? Why would that be? Can you explain?

There are many ways of looking at this, but in essence it is the attempt to change a function dependent on multiple variables where those variables have some interaction with each other, into one where the variables are chosen such that the results can be expressed as the sum or the product of functions of those variables.

For example if we have y=f(x1, x2) and how x2 affect y is dependent on the value of x1 then orthogonal function decomposition will result in y = f1(X1) + f2(X2), where X1 and X2 are new data inputs based on x1 and x2. It's called orthogonal because of the concept of dot products being zero if they are orthogonal.

See 'Empirical orthogonal functions' in Wikipedia.Dave Smith

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

**Armstrong: "the computationally useful 279k gray body temperature in our orbit**."

Doesn't this belong under the heading of fundamental background information but, that it doesn't really have anything to offer so far as understanding how increasing CO2 impacts the atmosphere and the climate engine within it?

Also, seems to me, that using the Kelvin scale (where zero is absolute molecular freezing and water freezes at 273) is a disingenuous effort to mislead regarding the significance of what's going on.

But I have no solid fundamental appreciation that will allow me to explain it beyond my gut feeling and an understanding that Earth could have never been anywhere near the lower digits of the Kelvin scale - from our planet's infancy we've had water and an atmosphere, then land masses.

Thinking one can comprehend that by experiments with little balls of different colors seems about as disconnected from Earth's physical reality as a human can get.

*Anyone have any thoughts to offer?*

*Explanations, serious constructive analogies?*Pure fluffDave Smith

**Armstrong:**"I would ask you how many of the people reading this blog know what a dot product is . I'd love to give a course on the meanings of the dot product , but for these purposes , it's the computation which counts ."

**"ratio of the dot products of source and object spectra which gives you the difference from that temperature for colored balls. ...**It was ridiculously hard to figure this out because I know of no explication of it on any supposed presentation of the "greenhouse effect" -- just the endless parroting of the "255K" , "33c" meme

**"**

I dare say not many.

Which brings up Bob's biggest deception. He wants to pretend that tossing around fancy terms and learning fragments of understanding makes him smarter than real experts who've spent careers learning about the landscape between those fragments that Bob pretends don't exist.

Can someone explain this relationship and it's salient importance to understanding global warming?

Well I'll start with the last one. "ratio of the dot products of source and object spectra" is meaningless gibberish.

First off, a dot product, like a regular numerical (scalar) product, is two things multiplied together. Likewise a ratio involves two inputs. So, either he means the dot product of source and object spectra, in which case there is only one input to his ratio, or he means the ratio of (source spectrum • something) to (object spectrum • something), in which case what are the somethings?

Johnny Vector There's more, check out his comment.

____________________________________________

He repeatedly makes elementary errors, such as writing down equations whose units don't balance. He doesn't understand Kirchoff's law of radiation, and he misapplies it. And more.

Armstrong won't even discuss these flaws or address criticisms of his calculations. He simply won't address them, as if that keeps him right. He prefers to pretend he doesn't hear these criticisms, so he can pretend this work is perfect. It is anything but -- it contains basic flaws that even a high school senior would not make.

====================================================David Appell There's more, check out his comment.

*The above quotes in context:*

**I never recognized the deep relationship between equilibrium temperatures and gravity before**- I always thought of it as a dynamic effect which would dissipate , but as the references in the comment on WUWT cited show , the computations are rather simple , as one would expect , and match the observations on various planets quite closely."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"The point about the first 2%3 of Griffiths E&M text being on statics is that you've got to understand statics before even contemplating dynamics .

**But I see no evidence that the journeyman "climate scientist" has anywhere near that background in "thermostatics" .**I mean it quite literally when I say there is little evidence that many of them know how to calculate the temperature of a radiantly heated colored ball . They certainly don't seem to understand the

**notion of orthogonal function decomposition**or they wouldn't keep parroting the "33c" warming meme rather than starting from

**the computationally useful 279k gray body temperature in our orbit**."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Stefan-Boltzmann gets you the gray body temperature given the total energy impinging on a point in our orbit . It is the

**ratio of the dot products of source and object spectra which gives you the difference from that temperature for colored balls**. These are the computations , the experimental validation of which would make a gang busters science project .

It was ridiculously hard to figure this out because I know of no explication of it on any supposed presentation of the "greenhouse effect" -- just the endless parroting of the "255K" , "33c" meme."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

## 6 comments:

Well I'll start with the last one. "ratio of the dot products of source and object spectra" is meaningless gibberish.

First off, a dot product, like a regular numerical (scalar) product, is two things multiplied together. Likewise a ratio involves two inputs. So, either he means the dot product of source and object spectra, in which case there is only one input to his ratio, or he means the ratio of (source spectrum • something) to (object spectrum • something), in which case what are the somethings?

But more importantly, a dot product is the product of two vectors, and a spectrum is not a vector. You might sloppily call it a vector when writing code to manipulate it, because your high-performance processor operates on vectors and will also operate on arrays that are not actually vectors but look like them. But it's not a vector, so you can't take a dot product. Now, if you pretend two spectra are vectors, and do the same math as the dot product (multiplying corresponding points together and adding up the sum), you have calculated the cross-correlation at zero lag. It's possible this is what he's talking about, since the radiative input to an isolated object in a radiation field depends on both the spectrum of the radiation and the absorption spectrum of the object. But if so he has rather seriously cocked up the terminology, to the point of being just wrong. Not to mention the fact that the relationship of the absorption spectrum to the radiation spectrum is indeed one of the first things you learn about when studying radiative physics. It is, for instance, the absolute basis of all spacecraft thermal engineering.

John, Thank you for taking the time to share that information.

"But if so he has rather seriously cocked up the terminology, to the point of being just wrong."

Yup, that's what happenings when amateurs fancy themselves smarter than professionals.

I looked up Johnny Vector and see that he has his own blog,

skimming through a few articles I see it's far ranging and fun reading.

In one he presents the classic question regarding Alarmists:

"Is it “alarmism” to yell fire in a crowded theatre if the building is in fact on fire?

And you’ve come to realize the basement is full of gasoline tanks?"

check it out

www.kevland.com/blog

Oh man, what'd you go and do that for? Now I need to write something new!

Thanks for the link though!

You could always write about Armstrong's game?

; - )

send a link this way.

cheers.

Anyone cognizant of Armstrong's claims can easily see that his "science" amounts to nothing.

He repeatedly makes elementary errors, such as writing down equations whose units don't balance. He doesn't understand Kirchoff's law of radiation, and he misapplies it. And more.

I've read Armstrong's presentation at a Heartland Institute conference more closely than anyone in the world. And I've been pointing out the flaws there for at least a year and a half.

Armstrong won't even discuss these flaws or address criticisms of his calculations. He simply won't address them, as if that keeps him right. He prefers to pretend he doesn't hear these criticisms, so he can pretend this work is perfect. It is anything but -- it contains basic flaws that even a high school senior would not make.

Bob Armstrong won't address basic criticisms. He is stubborn. But I am more stubborn than him, and won't stand for his insults of science and of scientists.

David Appell

http://www.davidappell.com

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